There is something wonderful about watching your child use her imagination and create something. In celebration of Earth Day, I wanted to re-read Shel Silverstein’s classic book “The Giving Tree” with my daughters. Not only did I want us to read the book, I wanted us to come up with a creative craft or activity that would bring to life the meaning of the story. I had a bunch of ideas in mind…all involving crafting some sort of tree. My youngest daughter spoke up with her own suggestion…she wanted to make her own book that would be inspired by The Giving Tree. So, that’s exactly what she did.
The first step was deciding what to write about. My daughter wanted to write about roses. She wanted to write about something in nature that can give of itself and be happy. We knew that people love to buy roses, so that makes people happy. We also knew another use for roses was to dry the petals and turn them into tea. What else could we use roses for? We did a little research and learned that rose hips, the part of the rose that is in the centre of the flower, is rich in Vitamins A and C. In some cultures and communities people use rose hips to make medicines. Roses are truly amazing flowers – with so much to give.
I made a simple book by stapling together a few sheets of white paper, wrapped in a piece of construction paper for the cover. My daughter had a rough idea of how she wanted the story to go and she got to work.
When she finished I was impressed. The Giving Roses is a beautiful story about a girl who loved to watch the flowers petals flutter in the wind and who loved the sweet smell of roses. Over the years the roses offer the little girl their petals for the girl to sell, their rose hips for the girl to make into medicine for her unwell child. In the end the girl, who is now a woman, and her son return to see the roses. The little boy uses the rose stems to make a crown. Here’s a short exerpt from the last page.
The girl did not come back for a very long time. The rose was put in a phase of depression. When the girl finally came back the rose almost jumped out of the soil. She had come with her son. The boy asked “May I use your stem to make a crown?” The rose answered “Sure, as long as it makes you happy.”
My daughter had captured the true emotion of The Giving Tree in her book. Through this activity we learned not only about roses, but about how giving can make you happy…happier than you would think you could be. The tree and the roses gave of themselves, until they could give no more and it brought them joy. The girl in the story appreciated the roses and loved the roses.
I am always amazed at how inspired children can become after reading a book. Not only did we learn about the beauty of nature, my daughter created her very own ode to nature with her book “The Giving Roses”. Have you read The Giving Tree? What did you take away from the story? What other things in nature give like a tree and a rose?
Today’s post is part of an Earth Day Read and Play Blog Hop. Please hop over and see the other Earth Day activities that my co-hosts are sharing.